This Article is From Jan 11, 2021

Highlights: States Prepare Plan For India's COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout On January 16

Highlights: Delhi became the first state today to announce its schedule for Covid-19 vaccination for health care workers, who will be inoculated in the phase 1 of the vaccination drive.

Highlights: States Prepare Plan For India's COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout On January 16

Latest News Today: The active COVID-19 caseload in India stands at 2,24,190. (File)

New Delhi:

All the states have started preparing strategy for the inoculation drive ahead of India's coronavirus vaccination drive that will begin January 16. Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the news a "landmark step forward in fighting COVID-19". Delhi became the first state today to announce its schedule for Covid-19 vaccination for health care workers, who will be inoculated in the phase 1 of the vaccination drive.

Priority will be given to around one crore healthcare workers and two crore frontline staff, like doctors, community health workers and police, who are directly involved in fighting the pandemic. The vaccine will be free of cost for this group, Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan said last week. The next group will be people over 50, followed by those under 50 but with co-morbidities. Around 30 crore people will be vaccinated in the first phase.

India's COVID-19 tally has risen to 1,04,50,284 with 18,645 new cases in a day - marginally higher than yesterday - while 1,00,75,950 people have recuperated so far, according to Union Health Ministry data this morning.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's visit to a village near Karnal and his meeting with a gathering of farmers got cancelled after a group of farmers protesting against the Centre's agri-sector laws ransacked the venue. The Haryana police had started the crackdown on the protesting farmers, when they tried to enter the Kemla village, using tear gas shells and water cannons. But the farmers had managed to enter the village and reach the venue of the meeting.
Cellphone footage showed many of them on the dais, shouting, throwing down chairs and tearing up posters.

The Chief Minister was scheduled to attend the gathering of farmers at the village and speak on the benefits of the Centre's three farm laws passed in September.

Here are the Highlights:

Jan 11, 2021 05:57 (IST)
Coronavirus live update: Australia's Brisbane lifts virus lockdown after city finds zero cases
Australia's third-largest city lifted stay-at-home orders Monday, after mass testing and tracing across Brisbane found no new coronavirus cases despite fears over a contagious strain entering the community.

More than two million people were ordered into a snap lockdown Friday after a cleaner at a quarantine hotel contracted the UK variant of Covid-19 from a returned traveller.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the lockdown would be lifted at 6pm local time Monday after tens of thousands of tests detected zero cases of transmission.
Jan 11, 2021 05:09 (IST)
Bird Flu updates: No case of bird flu in Odisha till now, 12,369 samples tested
Amid bird flu outbreak in several states, the Odisha government said that a total of 12,369 samples of birds have been collected and no sample has tested positive for Avian Influenza so far.

"During the current migratory season, a total of 12,369 samples of birds have been collected and no sample has tested positive for Avian Influenza so far in Odisha," said Fisheries and Animal Resources Development Department.

The Chief District Veterinary Officers have been instructed to intensify surveillance by continuous checking and disinfection of poultry farms, said the state government.
Jan 11, 2021 04:17 (IST)
Bird flu updates: 11 crows found dead in Mumbai
Amid the bird flu scare, as many as 11 crows were found dead in Mumbai's Chembur area on Sunday, said the police. The samples of dead crows have been sent for examination.

The Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying has said that the central teams formed for monitoring the spread of bird flu are visiting the affected sites in seven states across the country.

The department has issued advisories to the affected States so as to avoid further spread of disease. So far, the disease has been confirmed in Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, and Uttar Pradesh.
Jan 11, 2021 03:12 (IST)
Coronavirus update: "Every minute counts," says France as it detects UK variant
French authorities said they were racing to contain the more infectious variant of COVID-19 first found in Britain, which has now been detected in France's Mediterranean port of Marseille and in the Alps.

Marseille Mayor Benoit Payan said seven to eight people had tested positive for the new variant in the city, while tests were underway on 30 others who may also have been exposed to it.

"Right now, every minute counts in terms of preventing the spread of this English variant," Payan said. The local health authority in the Hautes-Alpes region, home to many ski resorts which attract British visitors, said the variant had also been discovered there.
Jan 11, 2021 02:24 (IST)
Russia Confirms First Case Of New UK Coronavirus Strain
Moscow on Sunday confirmed its first case of the new UK coronavirus strain, despite an earlier decision by officials to suspend flights from Britain to stop the mutation reaching Russia.
Jan 11, 2021 01:59 (IST)
Bird flu live update: Uttarakhand health department asks district-level teams to remain alert
After thousands of birds died due to avian influenza across the country, the Uttarakhand Health Department has issued an advisory asking all the Chief Medical Officers (CMOs) to keep district-level rapid response teams trained for any emergency situation.

The Chief Medical Officers have been instructed to be fully alert about the bird flu. They have also been asked to ensure the availability of the antiviral drug oseltamivir.
Jan 11, 2021 01:22 (IST)
Farmers' protest update: Four trains diverted, says western railways
Jan 11, 2021 00:37 (IST)
Coronavirus update: Assam reports 25 new COVID-19 cases, one more death
Assam reported one more death due to COVID-19, pushing the death count to 1,061, while the tally mounted to 2,16,590 with 25 new cases, the National Health Mission (NHM) said.

The positivity rate stood at 3.51 per cent against total testing of 61,79,337 samples so far, it said. During the day, the state reported more recoveries, 29, than the number of new infections, NHM said in its daily bulletin.

Assam now has 3,014 active cases, while 2,12,512 COVID-19 patients have so far recovered.
Jan 11, 2021 00:14 (IST)
Coronavirus Live Update: Rajasthan records 475 new COVID-19 cases
Rajasthan reported 475 new COVID-19 cases, taking the count of people infected with the virus to 3,12,996, according to the state health department. The total number of cases include 6,726 active cases. With 476 new recoveries in the state, the cumulative recoveries stand at 3,03,536.

The death count has mounted to 2,734 as 3 more people  each in Ajmer, Jodhpur and Jaipur died due to the virus.
Jan 10, 2021 23:52 (IST)
Coronavirus LIVE Updates: Russia Confirms First Case Of New UK Covid Strain
Moscow on Sunday confirmed its first case of the new UK coronavirus strain, despite an earlier decision by officials to suspend flights from Britain to stop the mutation reaching Russia. 

One person returning to Russia from the UK was found to have been infected with the new strain, the head of Russia's health regulator Rospotrebnadzor told state-run television.

Watchdog head Anna Popova did not specify when the individual tested positive for coronavirus or any other circumstances surrounding the discovery.

The B117 coronavirus strain is thought to have first emerged in southeastern England late last year, and has since been detected in dozens of countries around the world.

Officials in Moscow temporarily suspended flights to and from the UK in December, following a similar move by dozens of other countries in the wake of the emergence of the new strain.

Russia has one of the highest infection rates in the world and officials on Sunday confirmed a total of nearly 3.5 million cases.

Health officials last month admitted the country's virus toll was much higher than previously reported, making Russia the third-worst hit globally.

The Kremlin has placed its hope on the homegrown Sputnik V vaccine to counter the pandemic instead of the return to lockdown measures being imposed in many other European countries.
Jan 10, 2021 23:30 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Senior Delhi Police Officers Meet Farmer Leaders
Senior Delhi Police officers including Deputy Commissioner of Police (Northwest) Vijayanta Arya on Sunday met representatives of farmer unions protesting against the Centre's agricultural reforms.

The meeting came days ahead of Republic Day when the farm unions plan to take out a "Kisan Parade" to the national capital from different parts of Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh to press their demand for repeal of the three farm laws.

The officers said they frequently hold meetings with farmer leaders and the meeting on Sunday was also a routine meeting.

Thousands of farmers, mainly from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, have been camping at various border points of Delhi for over a month now, braving the cold weather and rains, to demand the repeal of the three laws.

Enacted in September 2020, the government has presented these laws as major farm reforms aimed at increasing farmers' income, but the protesting farmers have raised concerns that these legislations would weaken the minimum support price (MSP) and "mandi" (wholesale market) systems, leaving them at the mercy of big corporations.

On January 7, the protesting farmers took out tractor rallies which they said were a rehearsal for the "Kisan Parade".

The tractor rallies started from four different points -- Singhu to Tikri Border, Tikri to Kundli, Ghazipur to Palwal and Rewasan to Palwal.
Jan 10, 2021 23:06 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest Updates: Mathura Varsity Issues Advisory, Stressed On Biosecurity
Biosecurity may help prevent the spread of bird flu in poultry farms, said a Pt Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Veterinary University official while issuing an advisory here on Sunday.

"Biosecurity of newly purchased birds virtually acts as preventive medicine for poultry farms since vital source of virus for poultry is other infected birds," university Dean Pankaj Kumar Shukla told reporters prior to the release of the advisory for farmers and poultry farm owners.

Biosecurity refers to measures aimed at preventing the spread of harmful viruses to animals and birds.

He said since the infection spreads through used food, urine, reuse of pots of infected birds, clothes and shoes of employees, avoiding such things may prove productive.

Mr Shukla said in chickens, the symptoms include coughing, sneezing and abnormal respiratory sounds.

Birds may show nervous system disorders such as the inability to stand, twisting of the neck, abnormal positions of head and legs, huddling, ruffled feathers, decreased activity and at times diarrhea, he said.

Mr Shukla advised bird keepers to consult veterinary doctors or poultry consultants immediately after the symptoms are detected since there is no set treatment for the disease.

To prevent infection, keep wild birds away since they are a reservoir of influenza viruses, he said stating the advisory.
Jan 10, 2021 22:43 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest Updates: Supreme Court Has No Role In Resolving "Political Deadlock" Over Farm Laws, Says Farmer Union
The government should resolve the "political deadlock" over new farm laws without the involvement of the Supreme Court, the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) said on Sunday and warned that the protesting farmers "will soon close down all borders" of Delhi if their demand for repeal of the legislations is not met.

A day before the apex court hears a clutch of pleas challenging the new farm laws as well as the ones raising issues related to the ongoing agitation, the outfit said the Supreme Court "does not and cannot have any role in resolving a political deadlock" over the legislations enacted by the government "under pressure from corporates".

It said there is "no role for the Supreme Court" and the matter "should be left to political leadership".

It also accused the BJP-led government at the Centre of "shirking political responsibility" of resolving the crisis. The government is using the Supreme Court "as political shield", the AIKSCC alleged.

"Farmers continue to surround Delhi from all sides and will soon close down all borders. They are here to tell the BJP-led government and the Parliament that it has passed wrong laws," the outfit said in a statement.

It said the farm laws will uproot farmers, change farming pattern, decrease food security and "will lead to more suicides and hunger deaths and will destroy water, forest and ecological balance".
Jan 10, 2021 22:16 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Farmers Try To Disrupt Event At Jalandhar
A group of farmers protesting against the Centre's farm laws on Sunday tried to disrupt a BJP programme in Punjab's Jalandhar district.

They shouted slogans against the Centre and the Punjab BJP leadership over the farm laws.

Heavy police security arrangements were made by the Punjab Police to maintain law and order, said officials.

Barricades were put up, a water cannon and an earthmoving machine were deployed to prevent protesters from disrupting the BJP's programme at Company Bagh in Jalandhar.

The farmers, carrying black flags, tried to break the barricade to reach the venue where the state BJP leaders were holding their agitation against the state Congress government.

Some of the farmers managed to reach near the venue but police caught them and took them away.

Punjab BJP chief Ashwani Sharma was in Jalandhar to participate in a protest against the Congress-led dispensation organised by the state party unit.
Jan 10, 2021 21:21 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest Updates: Delhi's Sanjay Lake Declared "Alert Zone" After 17 More Ducks Found Dead
Amid a bird flu scare in different parts of the country, 17 more ducks were found dead at Sanjay Lake here on Sunday, prompting authorities to declare it an "alert zone", officials said.

This comes a day after the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) closed the famous water body-cum-park following the death of 10 ducks on the premises. The samples from the dead ducks have been sent for testing to ascertain whether bird flu was the cause of death.

Besides, the officials said, 91 crows have been found dead in 14 DDA parks in the last few days.

"Deaths of 17 more ducks were reported today at Sanjay Lake. A total of 27 ducks have died now. The park has been declared an alert zone by the rapid response team as per the directions of the animal husbandry department of the Delhi government," a senior DDA official said.

"The rapid response team had visited the lake site on January 9 and 10, and samples were collected for suitable action. Meanwhile... requisite preventive measures are being taken," he said.

Reports of the samples are awaited, he added.

Three other recreational parks in Delhi -- Hauz Khas Park, Dwarka Sector 9 Park, Hastsal Park -- were also closed on Saturday.
Jan 10, 2021 20:53 (IST)
Coronavirus LIVE Updates: Philippines Secure 30 Million Novavax Vaccine Doses
The Philippines has secured 30 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine developed by US drug maker Novavax, officials said Sunday, as the country braces for a surge in infections after a huge religious event.

This is only the second vaccine deal signed by the national government, which has faced growing criticism for its slowness in procuring jabs for the archipelago where nearly half a million infections have been recorded.

It hopes to secure 148 million doses this year from seven companies -- enough for around 70 percent of its population. But the government has warned it will depend on global supply. 

In an agreement with the Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine maker, the Philippines will buy 30 million doses of the jab developed by Novavax, the government's vaccine task force said in a statement. 

The price has not been finalised but the vaccine will be available from the third quarter.
Jan 10, 2021 20:25 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Supreme Court To Hear Pleas On Farm Laws, Ongoing Farmers' Agitation At Delhi Borders Tomorrow
Amid a deadlock in the government's negotiations with protesting farmer unions, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on Monday a clutch of pleas challenging the new farm laws as well as the ones raising issues related to the ongoing agitation at Delhi borders.

The eighth round of talks between the Centre and the farmer unions on January 7 appeared heading nowhere as the Centre ruled out repealing the contentious laws while the farmer leaders said they are ready to fight till death and their "ghar waapsi" will happen only after "law waapsi".

The Monday hearing on the pleas by a bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde assumes significance as the Centre and the farmer leaders are scheduled to hold their next meeting on January 15.

The top court, which had observed that there is no improvement on the ground regarding farmers' protests, was told by the Centre on the last date of hearing that "healthy discussions" were going on between the government and the unions over all the issues and there was good chance that both sides may come to a conclusion in the near future.

The court had then assured the government of an adjournment on January 11 provided it urges so saying that the settlement through talks was a possibility.
Jan 10, 2021 20:07 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest News: Over 200 Migratory Birds Found Dead In Himachal Pradesh
Sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh's Kangra district on Sunday, taking the total number of such birds suspected to have died of avian influenza to 4,235, officials said.

Each day, hundreds of migratory birds were found dead in the lake area since December 29. Last Monday, the samples tested positive for H5N1, they said.

Also, for the fourth day in a row, a large number of dead poultry birds were found dumped by the side of the Chandigarh-Shimla highway in Solan district. The remains of the birds were buried according to safety protocol and their samples sent to a disease diagnostic laboratory in Jalandhar.

Earlier, dead chickens were found dumped twice near Chakki Mor and once at Barog bypass near the district headquarters.

A joint team of animal husbandry officials from the Centre and the state visited Siyal in Dhameta wildlife range and Guglara in Nagrota Surian range of the sanctuary on Sunday to assess the situation, Chief wildlife warden Archana Sharma said. 
Jan 10, 2021 19:27 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Withdraw New Agriculture laws, Sachin Pilot To Centre
Former Rajasthan deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot on Sunday demanded from the Union government to withdraw the new farm laws, saying neither farmers nor state governments were consulted over it.

Addressing farmers in Tonk, Mr Pilot said there is not even a single representative of farmers in the Union government and no one is bothered about their plight.

"The economy is collapsing, petrol-diesel prices are skyrocketing, cylinder prices are rising, inflation is rising, unemployment is increasing and in such a situation, the government is hitting the farmers with such a move," he said, demanding the withdrawal of the laws.

"This is the first time that different opposition parties are unitedly demanding that the government should withdraw the laws. The government did not discuss the laws with farmers or any state government before enacting these," he said.

Under the party's "Kisan Bachao, Desh Bachao" campaign, Mr Pilot also interacted with farmers in Bamor, Sonva, Harchandeda and Arniyamal gram panchayats. He reached Kabra village riding a bullock cart.
Jan 10, 2021 19:01 (IST)
Maharashtra's COVID-19 tally rises to 19,69,114 with addition of 3,558 new cases; 34 deaths push count to 50,061, reported news agency PTI quoting State Health Department
Jan 10, 2021 18:31 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest News: Centre Directs Zoos To Submit Daily Report To Central Zoo Authority
A day after over 1,200 birds were found dead in the country with seven states confirming outbreak of avian influenza, the Centre on Sunday directed zoo managements to submit daily report to the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) till their area is declared free from the disease.

The CZA, under the environment ministry, issued an office memorandum directing management of all zoos to strengthen surveillance and aviary management.

"In endemic areas, entry to aviary sections may be monitored and restricted, and all vehicles entering the zoo may be sanitised. All water bodies within the zoo should be monitored and artificial water bodies may be drained. 

"Bird exchange programmes (both national and international may be stopped until further notice). Entry points of migratory birds to be strictly monitored. Aviary enclosures may be disinfected and all keepers in the sections may be instructed to follow disinfection protocol and use PPE kits which may be destroyed as per standard protocols," it said.

The CZA said avian influenza is a scheduled disease under the Prevention and Control of Infectious and Contagious Diseases in Animals Act, 2009, and reporting such a disease is obligatory for taking appropriate preventive measures against its spread.
Jan 10, 2021 18:01 (IST)
Coronavirus LIVE Updates: UK Expands Asymptomatic Covid Testing As New Vaccine Centres Open
The UK on Sunday announced a major expansion of COVID-19 tests being made available more widely to asymptomatic people as part of efforts to control the rapid spread of a new coronavirus variant, which has led to Britain hitting the grim milestone of 80,000 deaths from the virus.

The community testing regime, until now available to those displaying symptoms, has been expanded to cover anyone unable to work from home to access the rapid lateral flow tests that give results in 30 minutes.

The move comes as hundreds of thousands of people aged 80 and over were sent letters to book a coronavirus vaccination at new National Health Service (NHS) vaccination centres that will be up and running from Monday.

"With more than 1,000 vaccination sites across the country, including seven new mass vaccination centres, we will help protect hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people over the coming weeks as we accelerate towards offering 12 million people the jab in England by the middle of February," said British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Jan 10, 2021 17:38 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest News: Kanpur Zoo Closed Until Further Orders In View Of Bird Flu Outbreak
The Kanpur Zoological Park has been shut down until further orders in the view of the bird flu outbreak.

"It was Sunday so we wanted to go out. We came to visit the zoo but it has been closed. We are disappointed," a visitor said.

The Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying on Saturday confirmed positive cases of Avian Influenza in migratory birds in Kanpur.

So far, the disease has been confirmed from seven states- Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, and Uttar Pradesh.

The ministry has issued an advisory to the affected states so as to avoid further spread of disease.
Jan 10, 2021 17:13 (IST)
Maharashtra Hospital Fire Latest Updates: Uddhav Thackeray Meets Victims' Parents, Orders Safety Audit
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said orders have been issued for conducting safety audit of all hospitals in the state, after 10 newborn babies died in a hospital fire.

Mr Thackeray flew in from Mumbai in the afternoon and met parents of the babies who died in the fire on Saturday. He also spoke to hospital and health officials.

The Chief Minister told reporters that he met the families of the victims with folded hands. 

"I could not find words to console them," he said.

"The probe we have announced will also check if the fire was an accident or something which happened as a result of ignoring earlier safety report," Mr Thackeray said.

"I have also issued orders to check if there have been any incidents in the state of ignoring safety norms at hospitals while combating the coronavirus pandemic," he said.
Jan 10, 2021 16:46 (IST)
COVID-19 LIVE Updates: New Coronavirus Variant Found In Travellers From Brazil, Says Japan
A new coronavirus variant was detected in four travellers from Brazil, Japan's Health Ministry said on Sunday, marking an advance in changes to the pandemic virus.

The new variant is different from those first found in Britain and South Africa, although the three of them share some common mutation, said Takaji Wakita, head of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases.

"I understand a new variant that is different from Britain's and South Africa's has been found," Wakita told a health ministry briefing.

Characteristics of the new variant, such as how effective vaccines can be against it and how serious its symptoms can be, are being studied, a health ministry official said.
Jan 10, 2021 16:19 (IST)
Bird Flu Latest News: Preventive Measures In Place At Lucknow Zoo, Birds Being Monitored
Following the confirmation of bird flu in samples collected from the Kanpur zoo, the Nawab Wajid Ali Shah Zoological Garden in Lucknow is opting for preventive measures and keeping a close watch on the birds kept in the bird enclosure, officials said on Sunday.

"No case (of bird flu) has been reported here, yet we are taking all the preventive measures. The virus spreads from the excreta of migratory birds and our effort is to ensure that it does not come here," zoo Director RK Singh said.

Bottles containing a solution of potassium permanganate have been kept at the gates of the zoo so that the visitors enter the premises disinfected, he said.

"We are maintaining a watch on the birds'' enclosure. If any unusual behaviour is seen in any bird, it will be taken to the isolation ward," Singh added.

In Bareilly, arrangements to provide drinking water to migratory birds have been shut and reflectors are being installed at the Central Avian Research Institute (CARI).

"In order to ensure that migratory birds do not enter the CARI campus through the aerial route, reflectors are being installed on a war footing. The lower branches of the trees on the roadside have been cut, so that the birds do not drop their excreta on the road," Acting Director of the institute Sanjeev Kumar said.
Jan 10, 2021 15:50 (IST)
Coronavirus LIVE Updates: India's Covid Fatality Rate Declines To 1.44 Per Cent; Daily Deaths Below 300 For Last 16 Days
The COVID-19 fatality rate in India has been showing a sustained decline and has further dropped to 1.44 per cent due to focused efforts of the Centre, states and Union Territories on effective clinical management of the hospitalised cases, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday.

With effective containment strategy, aggressive testing and standardised clinical management protocols based on holistic standard of care protocol across government and private hospitals, the number of new deaths have dipped, it stated.

"Less than 300 new COVID-19 deaths are being recorded in the country for the last 16 days," the ministry said.

As part of the COVID-19 management and response policy, there has been a sharp focus of the Centre on not only containing the viral disease but also to reduce deaths and to save lives by providing quality clinical care to the critical and severely diseased patients. 

Collaborative efforts of the Centre, states and UTs have resulted in strengthening of health facilities across the country, the health ministry said.
Jan 10, 2021 15:21 (IST)
As India Awaits Vaccine Rollout, Delhi, Other States Prep Plan
Delhi became the first state today to announce its schedule for Covid-19 vaccination for health care workers, who will be inoculated in the phase 1 of the vaccination drive that will begin on January 16. "Health care workers will be vaccinated in the first phase only in hospitals," Arvind Kejriwal's government said today.

Bengal said it would give the vaccine for free to everyone in the state.

The Centre has announced January 16 as the day for rollout of the long-awaited vaccine, which got the drug regulators' approval last Sunday.
Jan 10, 2021 15:00 (IST)
Haryana Chief Minister Cancels Farmers' Meet After Chaos By Protesters
Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's visit to a village near Karnal and his meeting with a gathering of farmers got cancelled after a group pf farmers protesting against the Centre's agri-sector laws ransacked the venue. The Haryana police had started the crackdown on the protesting farmers, when they tried to enter the Kemla village, using tear gas shells and water cannons.

But the farmers had managed to enter the village and reach the venue of the meeting.
Cellphone footage showed many of them on the dais, shouting, throwing down chairs and tearing up posters.

The Chief Minister was scheduled to attend the gathering of farmers at the village and speak on the benefits of the Centre's three farm laws passed in September. Anticipating trouble, arrangements were made for heavy security and a number of police personnel were deployed at the village ahead of the meeting.
Jan 10, 2021 13:57 (IST)
Coronavirus Latest News: 8 hospitals identified for vaccinating 18,000 health staff in Goa
 The Goa government has identified eight hospitals for the first phase of COVID-19 vaccination in the coastal state where around 18,000 health care workers will receive the doses, an official said on Sunday.

As many as 100 vaccinations would be done at each of these eight facilities in a day, which amounts to 800 inoculations per day, state immunisation officer Dr Rajendra Borkar told PTI.

"The state government has identified five government- run hospitals and three private facilities where vaccine would be administered to health care workers," he said.

The short-listed government hospitals are - Goa Medical College (near Panaji), Hospicio Hospital (Margao), Asilo Hospital (Mapusa), Chicalim Health Centre (Vasco), Sub District Hospital (Ponda).
Jan 10, 2021 13:08 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Delhi's Chilla, Gazipur, Tikri, Dhansa borders closed, says Traffic Police
The Chilla and Gazipur Borders (Delhi-Uttar Pradesh) are closed for traffic coming from Noida and Ghaziabad to Delhi in the wake of ongoing farmer protests, the Delhi Traffic Police informed on Sunday, asking people to take alternate routes via Anand Vihar, Delhi Noida Direct Flyway, Bhopra and Loni Borders.

The Tikri and Dhansa Borders are closed for any traffic movement, while the Jhatikara Borders is open only for light motor vehicles, two-wheelers, and pedestrians, the Police tweeted.

It also informed about open borders to Haryana.

Jan 10, 2021 13:01 (IST)
COVID-19 Latest News: India's recovery rate improves to 96.42%
With 1,00,75,950 recoveries, the COVID-19 recovery rate in India now stands at 96.42 per cent, the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting informed on Sunday.

There are currently 2,23,335 active cases in the country, 2.14 per cent of the total positive cases (1,04,50,284).

As many as 1,50,999 lives have been claimed so far, taking the death rate to 1.44 per cent.

India on Saturday reported 18,645 new COVID-19 cases and 201 deaths, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) said on Sunday.
Jan 10, 2021 12:30 (IST)
Farmers' Protest Latest News: Ahead Of ML Khattar's Visit To Karnal, Cops Use Tear Gas On Farmers
The Haryana police have cracked down on protesting farmers at a toll plaza near Haryana's Karnal, ahead of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's visit to a nearby village. Cellphone footage from the spot showed police firing tear gas shells, water cannons at farmers who are trying to enter the Kemla village.

The Chief Minister is scheduled to attend a farmers' gathering at the village and speak of the benefits of the Centre's three farm laws passed in September.
Heavy presence of police personnel has been observed at the village ahead of the meeting.

BJP-ruled Haryana had made headlines in November when it decided to stop the farmers on way to Delhi from across the state as well as those in Punjab.
Jan 10, 2021 12:08 (IST)
Avian Flu Confirmed In 7 States, Centre Scrambles To Limit The Spread
With more states confirming cases of avian flu and many still probing the unexplained deaths of wild birds, crows, and poultry, the central government has intensified its coordination with local authorities to contain the spread of the disease.

The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying has sought increased monitoring of potential hot spots for the diseases spread and asked for constant communication.

Besides Uttar Pradesh, six other states where bird flu has been confirmed till now are Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Gujarat.
Jan 10, 2021 11:47 (IST)
COVID-19 Latest news: Arunachal Pradesh reports 3 new cases, tally rises to 16,767
Arunachal Pradesh reported three more COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, pushing the total caseload in the state to 16,767, a senior health official said on Sunday.

Two cases were reported in the Capital Complex Region and one from Tawang district, the official said.

All the cases were asymptomatic, two patients were detected through rapid antigen tests and one by TrueNAT method, State Surveillance Officer (SSO) Dr Lobsang Jampa said.

Sixteen more people were cured of the disease on Saturday, taking the total number of recoveries in the northeastern state to 16,647, he said.

The COVID-19 recovery rate in the state is 99.26 per cent, the SSO said.
Jan 10, 2021 10:41 (IST)
"Found Signal": Indonesia Rescuers On Downed Plane In Java Sea
Indonesian rescuers said Sunday they had detected a signal from a Boeing passenger plane that crashed into the Java Sea shortly after takeoff with 62 people on board.

A military vessel "has found the signal from (Sriwijaya Air) SJ182" and divers had recovered parts of the plane from around 23 metres (75 feet) below the water's surface, the transport ministry said in a statement, citing Indonesia's military chief Hadi Tjahjanto.
Jan 10, 2021 10:26 (IST)
COVID-19: 18,645 fresh cases push India's tally to 1,04,50,284
India's COVID-19 caseload rose to 1,04,50,284 with 18,645 infections being reported in a day, while the recoveries have surged to 1,00,75,950, according to the Union Health Ministry''s data updated on Sunday.

The death count reached 1,50,999 with 201 more people succumbing to the disease in a span of 24 hours, the data updated at 8 am showed.

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease so far surged to 1,00,75,950, pushing the national COVID-19 recovery rate of 96.42 per cent, while the case fatality rate dropped to 1.44 per cent.

The COVID-19 active caseload remained below three lakh for the 20th consecutive day.
There are 2,23,335 active coronavirus infections in the country which comprise 2.14 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated.
Jan 10, 2021 09:55 (IST)
Farm Law Protesters "Eating Biryani To Spread Bird Flu," Says BJP Leader
The raging farmers' agitation around the national capital could lead to a nationwide bird flu problem since the protesters are eating chicken biriyani to spread the epidemic, a BJP legislator from Rajasthan has said. In a video doing the rounds on social media, Ramganj Mandi MLA Madan Dilawar is also seen saying that those who are conspiring to create such a crisis in the country could be "terrorists, robbers, and thieves". 

Attacking the farmer protesters, Mr Dilawar says in the video that the protesting farmers aren't giving a thought to the country or its people. The protest is merely a picnic, he says.

"They are merely relishing biriyani. They are eating kaju-badam (dry fruits). They are enjoying in all ways. They are changing their appearances frequently. There could be many terrorists among them. Thieves and looters, too. They could be the enemies of farmers," Mr Dilawar says.
Jan 10, 2021 09:42 (IST)
Just In | 18,645 new Covid cases in India, marginally higher than yesterday; over 1 crore have recovered so far, 1.5 lakh total deaths
Jan 10, 2021 09:33 (IST)
COVID-19: 371 new cases in Maharashtra's Thane, 7 more deaths
Thane has added 371 new cases of coronavirus, taking the infection count in the Maharashtra district to 2,46,702, an official said on Sunday.

Apart from these new cases recorded on Saturday, seven more people also died of COVID-19, raising the death toll in the district to 6,021, he said.

The COVID-19 mortality rate in the district currently stands at 2.44 per cent, the official said.

So far, 2,36,555 patients have recovered from the infection, improving the recovery rate to 95.89 per cent.

As of now, there are 4,126 active COVID-19 cases in the district, the official said.
Jan 10, 2021 09:27 (IST)
COVID-19 Latest Updates: 4 security personnel among 17 new cases in Mizoram
Seventeen more people tested positive for COVID-19 in Mizoram, taking the state's tally to 4,292 on Sunday, an official said.

Eleven of the new cases were reported from the Aizawl district, four from Lawngtlai and two cases were detected in the Lunglei district, he said.

Two Army personnel and two Border Security Force (BSF) jawans were among the newly-infected people.

There are 98 active cases in the state at present,  while 4,186 people have already recovered from the disease. Mizoram has reported eight COVID-19 fatalities till date.
Jan 10, 2021 09:05 (IST)
Coronavirus news: UK raises $1 billion to support COVID-19 vaccination in developing countries
The United Kingdom has raised USD 1 billion from global donors to fund vaccination campaigns against COVID-19 in developing countries, the UK Foreign Office said Sunday.

"The UK has helped to raise USD 1 billion for the coronavirus COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC) through match-funding other donors, which combined with the Pound 548 million [USD 744.5 million] of UK aid pledged will help distribute one billion doses of coronavirus vaccines to 92 developing countries this year," the office said in a statement, released as UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres begins his online visit to the country to mark the 75th anniversary of the United Nations.

The foreign office noted the country's support for the UN throughout the years.
Jan 10, 2021 08:26 (IST)
Farmers Protest Updates: 40-Year-Old Farmer Dies By Suicide At Epicenter Of Protest In Delhi
A 40-year-old farmer from Punjab's Fatehgarh Sahib - one of tens of thousands who have been protesting against the centre's agriculture laws for nearly two months now - died by suicide at Singhu on the Delhi-Haryana border on Saturday after consuming a poisonous substance.

The farmer - identified as Amarinder Singh - told friends he was forced to take this step because the government had refused to listen to their demands - that the agriculture laws be repealed and the legal guarantees be offered for MSP (minimum support price).

He said that he hoped his death would bring success to the farmers' movement.

Mr Singh had earlier been rushed to Sonipat's FIMS Hospital but he died during treatment.

Jan 10, 2021 08:10 (IST)
Farmers Protest Latest News: Congress To Protest Against Farm Laws Outside Governor Houses On Jan 15
The Congress party on Saturday announced that it will stage protests outside governor houses across the country on January 15 to extend its support to the ongoing farmers' agitation.
"Why the government is not fulfilling its duties towards people? The government is sold out to few capitalists.

The Congress party has decided to celebrate ''Kisan Adhikar Diwas'' on January 15 while holding protest and demonstration at district headquarters. We will also organise rallies and after the rallies, we will march towards governor houses across the country. Now, the time has come to listen farmers' voices," said Congress' General Secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala.

This comes after the eighth round of talks between the government and the farmer unions remained inconclusive. The government asked farmer unions to "give an option other than repealing" and the next round of talks is proposed for January 15.
Jan 10, 2021 07:54 (IST)
Body Parts Found At Indonesian Plane Crash Site, Say Investigators
Indonesian investigators said Sunday they found body parts off the coast of the capital Jakarta where a budget airline plane with 62 people on board crashed shortly after takeoff.

"As of this morning, we've received two (body) bags, one with passenger belongings and the other with body parts," Jakarta police spokesman Yusri Yunus told Metro TV.
Jan 10, 2021 06:59 (IST)
Jan 10, 2021 06:41 (IST)
Coronavirus LIVE Updates: Pope Francis To Have Covid Vaccine As Early As Next Week
Pope Francis said he planned to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as early as next week and urged everyone to get a shot, to protect not only their own lives but those of others.

"I believe that ethically everyone should take the vaccine," the Pope said in an interview with TV station Canale 5. "It is an ethical choice because you are gambling with your health, with your life, but you are also gambling with the lives of others."

Vatican City, the smallest independent county in the world, home to about 450 people including Pope Francis, has said it will shortly launch its own vaccination campaign against the coronavirus. "Next week," the Pope said, "we will start doing it here, in the Vatican, and I have booked myself in. It must be done."
Jan 10, 2021 06:40 (IST)
UK helps raise $1 billion in global vaccine donations
Britain said on Sunday it has helped raise $1 billion (818 million euros) from global donors towards the drive to help "vulnerable countries" access coronavirus vaccines, by match-funding contributions.

The UK said, in addition, it has committed £548 million to the COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC), after matching with £1 every $4 pledged by other donors.

Canada, Japan and Germany are among the countries to make contributions that it matched, helping the AMC raise more than $1.7 billion in total so far.